Originally from Norway, Ben Lorentzen found his voice in the clubs of New York City and northern New Jersey, and makes impeccable musicianship one of his trademarks.
His latest album, ‘Pains And Pleasures Of Intimacy’, reminds us how bracing and provocative modern rock can be when played by a master craftsman. Standout tracks, ‘Dead Man In The Closet, and ‘Crows On The Wire’, are the perfect examples of Lorentzen’s brilliant songwriting and his stunning vocal talent.
The songs work together as a mini-suite, and have been paired for two conceptually-linked, beautifully shot videos, telling a continuous story of the hazards of love. This tale will continue across two other songs from the album.
Lorentzen, and director Johan Anderson took care with both videos, which were shot through vintage lenses and presented in wide-screen format, giving them an old movie feel. There are nods to fellow Scandinavian Ingmar Bergman and film noir, which will appeal to cinema buffs. Lorentzen grew up in Tromso, above the Arctic Circle, a place where the sun literally doesn’t shine for months at a time, and this relationship with strong darks and lights is present in each clip, shot artfully in black and white.
‘Dead Man In The Closet’, shot in stunning black and white, intersperses footage of Lorentzen at the microphone, demonstrating his singing prowess and the command over his audience, with the real action – a devilish-looking long-haired bartender, who puts his supernatural powers on destructive display.
‘Crows On The Wire’ additionally features a long sequence shot in a beautiful old Mustang convertible, which adds to the classic quality of the video. The song picks up where the last left off, with the sinister bartender making a re-appearance, and the video ending in tragedy. Classically gritty film-noir, both clips are creepy and yet at the same time compelling.